Every entrepreneur needs a “hired gun”.
Strategic alliances are important for small business owners. One of the most critical aspects–that will determine the success or failure of your business–is the company you keep. Creating a strong advisory group or “board of directors” can help entrepreneurs conquer commonplace challenges during the infancy stages of business development.
So, the question is, “Who should you call?”
Carissa Reiniger, the founder and CEO of Silver Lining Limited. Reiniger launched the consultancy that developed SLAPcenter.com, the first software portal that helps small business with revenues between $100,000 and $2,000,000 analyze their business model, figure out the best ways to grow, set a one year financial goal, build the plan to hit that goal and then actually execute that plan.
Reiniger took her small business from a concept to an international company with revenue in the millions, in just over one year.
Silver Lining works with entrepreneurs to help them grow their small businesses, using the Silver Lining Action Plan (SLAP™) model that Reiniger created. Her dedication to helping more entrepreneurs make money doing what they love resulted in a number of campaigns and partnerships with other entrepreneurs, Fortune 500 companies and government agencies aligned to increase the success rate of small businesses.
Company: Silver Lining Limited
Founder, Age: Carissa Reiniger, 27
Location: Toronto, New York
Startup Year: 2005
Startup Costs: Undisclosed
How I Got Started
I had just relocated to Toronto. While working at an advertising agency in business development for huge companies, I was simultaneously networking at events trying to meet new friends. I kept meeting small business owners who were struggling with how to grow their businesses. They worked SO hard and they had SO much passion but many were not making money. I wanted to help them.
They had all the passion that I felt my corporate clients lacked.
I love business development and I loved all these small businesses so I decided to launch a company that would help small business grow. I had never worked for a small business, been a small business owner before or helped a small business grow yet decided to start a business helping small businesses grow. Crazy!
For the first year I worked with anyone who would have me and interviewed an entrepreneur a day to figure out why so many struggled with growth. Through those interviews I learned a lot about small business and a ton about what they needed.<
Hence, I built our model, the Silver Lining Action Plan, and have been working with entrepreneurs ever since.
Best Success Story
After my speaking tour, I literally had about 100 emails from small business owners who had attended. One woman told me that she had considered giving up on her passion and starting a “safer” business. After the workshop she said she was literally re-started. I still get updates from her and she is making money doing what she loves.
Make sure you figure out your passion first and build a business around that. Next, be prepared to work harder than you expected. Lastly, try to enjoy the journey.
Every successful entrepreneur has a colorful story–no one ever just becomes successful. They fight their way through the first years. As you are fighting through those first years just remember that you are building your story to tell later.
Connect with Carissa on Twitter.
© YFS Magazine. All Rights Reserved. Copying prohibited. All material is protected by U.S. and international copyright laws. Unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this material is prohibited. Sharing of this material under Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International terms, listed here, is permitted.